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5 
362.83 

S2fck- 
n82 



BATTERED 
WOMEN 







BTATE OOCUMEffTS COL 

JUN2 2 198I 



MONTANA STATE LSi 
1515 E. 6th AVi 
ELENA. MONTANA 



ECT»ON 



RARY 



19620 



MONTANA STATE LIBRARY 

S 362.83 S26b 1982 c.1 

Banered women :rights and options in Mo 



3 0864 00044159 5 



STATE OF MONTANA 
TED SCHWINDEN, Governor 

DEPARTMENT OF SOCIAL AND REHABILITATION SERVICES 
JOHN LA FAVER, Director 

COMMUNITY SERVICES DIVISION 
NORMA VESTRE, Administrator 

MANAGEMENT OPERATIONS BUREAU 
BOYCE FOWLER, Program Manager 



MONTANA DEPARTMENT OF SOCIAL AND 

REHABILITATION SERVICES 
MANAGEMENT OPERATIONS BUREAU 
R O. Box 4210 
Helena, Montana 59604 



Dear Reader, 

This booklet is yours to use as an aid — to give you information to help you make the 
choices you need to make. 

There are other alternatives that may be more helpful to you. Counseling for you and 
your mate are good choices for many women. Try to understand all of your options and 
where you can go for help. 

Battered women encounter a series of obstacles when they pursue legal alternatives 
available through the courts and justice system. Such barriers include: 

• lack of information 

• the wrong information or myths 

• "the runaround" 

• time involved in getting through a case 

• traditional lack of womens civil and legal rights 

• high priced attorneys 

All these result in frustration and anger, and a feeling of helplessness. Since helpless- 
ness is what keeps battered women in a battering relationship and from pursuing legal 
alternatives, we want to do all we can to get rid of it, and to get through this difficult 
time to a safer life. 

Every attempt was made to assure accuracy of the information in the booklet. 
Sometimes, however, you may encounter shghtly different opinions re: the legal infor- 
mation, or other interpretations. Please do not despair, but ASK QUESTIONS or seek 
assistance from advocates available through battered women's programs or shelters. 

This booklet was written for you, to help you and to end some of your confusion. 

Remember: YOU ARE NOT ALONE. 

First printing of 300 copies (1979) made possible in part by a grant to Helena Women's Center 
from the Montana Board of Crime Control in conjunction with a workshop on battering October 
26, 1979. 

Second printing of 300 copies (1980) made possible by a grant to the Helena Women's Center 
Battered Woman's Program from the Montana Department of Social and Rehabilitation Services. 

Third and revised printing of 3,000 copies made possible by the Domestic Violence Grant 
program, administered by the Department of Social and Rehabilitation Services, from funds 
appropriated by the 47th Montana Legislature. 



PLACES TO CALL 
IF YOU ARE A VICTIM OF BATTERING 

Women's Resource Centers and Crisis Lines (Women — or sometimes men — who 
are experienced in crisis intervention will answer your call) 

Battered Spouse Support Line (24 hr.) 
Rape Task Force (24 hr.) 
YWCA Women's Center 

24 hour crisis line 
Helpline (emergencies) 

Safe Space (Shelter— 24 hr. line) 
Ext 224 Crisis Line (24 hr.) 

Crisis Line— Triangle Transition (24 hr.) 

Women's Resource Center (24 hr.) 

Mental Health Line for Spouse Abuse 

Crisis Line (24 hr.) 

24 hr. Crisis Line or direct referral to 
MERCY HOME, the shelter 
Mental Health 

Chester Sherrif's Office— CaU CoUect 



Women's Center Crisis Line (24 hr.) 
Friendship Center (24 hr.) 

Rape Crisis Line (24 hr.) 

Women's Center of Flathead Valley (8-5 p.m.) 

Spouse Abuse Emergency Services (SAVES) 
Fergus Ct. Welfare for Information & Referral 

Lincoln Ct. Womens Help Line (24 hr. — resi- 
dents of Eureka and TVoy, Call Collect) 

Mental Health 24 hr. Crisis Line 

Crisis Line (24 hr. & referral to YWCA Battered 

Women & Children's Shelter) 

YWCA 

Women's Place — 24 hr. Advocacy 

Women's Resource Center — 

University of Montana 

Victim to Victim Support — Rape Counseling 

Family Crisis Center 

Crisis Line — Triangle Transition 

24 hr. Crisis Line/Information 

Information & Referral (Monday thru Friday, 

8-5 only) 

Jefferson Ct. Spouse Abuse Program 



Billings 


259-8100 




259-6506 




245-6879 


Bozeman 


586-4111 




586-3333 


Butte 


782-8511 




723-8262 Ext: 


Conrad 


278-7542 


DiUon 


683-4817 


Glasgow 


228-9349 


Glendive 


365-2412 


Great Falls 


453-6511 




761-2100 


Hi Line area (serves 


759-5170 


Hill, Liberty, and 




Blaine Qs) 




Helena 


443-5353 




442-6800 


KalispeU 


755-5067 




755-5222 


Lewistown 


911 Emergency 




538-7468 


Libby 


293-3223 


Miles City 


232-1688 


Missoula 


543-8277 




543-6691 




543-7606 




243-4153 




549-2064 


Ronan 


676-2770 


Shelby 


434-5504 


1\vin Bridges 


684-5400 


Whitehall 


287-3282 




287-5440 



Montana Legal Services Association (may take your case if you have low income or 
may refer you; however, Legal Services will not help you obtain a temporary restraining 
order unless a divorce is involved. Neither will Legal Services assist with a divorce unless 
you have children, either from a previous marriage or the present.) 

Billings 248-7113 Helena 442-9830 

Browning 338-7623 Kalispell 755-9660 

Butte 723-4612 Missoula 543-8343 

Cut Bank 873-2704 Warm Springs 693-2221 

Great Falls 453-6589 Wolf Point 653-1405 

Havre 265-9314 

County Attorney — Handles criminal cases ONLY. His office does not file divorces, 
or assist in custody actions, though he may become involved if there is abuse or neglect 
of children of custodial interference. His office will not assist in obtaining temporary 
restraining orders (TRO) — they must be obtained with the use of a private attorney. 
The role of the county attorney is to prosecute crime and criminals. The office will be 
involved if criminal charges are filed for assault. 

Police/Sheriff — If you Uve within a city or town, call the city police or town 
marshall's office. If you live outside of a city or town, call the county sheriff's office. 
The proper telephone number can be found in the telephone book under the name of 
the city, town, or county. 

Montana Mental Health Centers (general counseling on a sliding fee basis) 



Anaconda 


563-3413 


Havre 


265-9639 


Big Timber 


932-2608 


Helena 


442-0640 


Billings 


252-5658 


Kalispell 


755-6262or 755-5300 


Bozeman 


586-5493 


Livingston 


222-3332 


Bridger 


662-3469 


Libby 


293-6513 


Butte 


723-5489 


Lewistown 


538-7483 


Chester 


759-5410 


Malta 


654-1599 


Chinook 


357-3364 


Miles City 


232-1687 


Choteau 


466-5681 


Missoula 


543-5177 


Columbus 


322-5834 


Plentywood 


765-2550 


Conrad 


278-3205 


Red Lodge 


446-2500 


Colstrip 


748-3600 


Ronan 


676-8500 


Dillon 


683-2200 


Roundup 


323-1142 


Forsyth 


356-7654 


Scobey 


487-5442 


Glasgow 


228-9349 


Shelby 


434-5285 


Glendive 


365-2922 


Sidney 


482-4635 


Great Falls 


761-2100 


Superior 


822-4093 


Hamilton 


363-1051 


Thompson Falls 


827-3641 


Hardin 


665-1049 


Wolf Point 


653-1872 


Harlowton 


632-4508 







County Welfare Department Directory (Information & Referral; possible financial 
resource for women & children; offers counseling particularly for the protection of 
children) 



County 


County SeatTelephone No. 


County 


County SeatTelephone No. 


Beaverhead 


Dillon 


683-2142 


Meagher 


White Sul. Spr. 


547-3752 


Big Horn 


Hardin 


665-1907 


Mineral 


Superior 


822-4551 


Blaine 


Chinook 


357-2276 


Missoula 


Missoula 


721-5700 


Broadwater 


Townsend 


266-3447 


Musselshell 


Roundup 


323-2101 


Carbon 


Red Lodge 


446-1302 


Park 


Livingston 


222-6120 


Carter 


Ekalaka 


775-8751 


Petroleum 


Winnett 


429-5311 


Cascade 


Great Falls 


761-6605 


Phillips 


Malta 


654-2252 


Chouteau 


Fort Benton 


622-5432 


Pondera 


Conrad 


278-5222 


Custer 


Miles City 


232-1247 


Powder River 


Broadus 


436-2621 


Daniels 


Scobey 


487-2721 


Powell 


Deer Lodge 


846-3680 


Dawson 


Glendive 


365-4314 


Prairie 


Terry 


637-5570 


Deer Lodge 


Anaconda 


563-3448 


Ravalli 


Hamilton 


363-1944 


Fallon 


Baker 


778-3324 


Richland 


Sidney 


482-2015 


Fergus 


Lewistown 


538-7468 


Roosevelt 


Wolf Point 


653-1512 


Flathead 


KalispeU 


755-5300 


Rosebud 


Forsyth 


356-2563 


Gallatin 


Bozeman 


587-3193 




Lame Deer 


477-6251 


Garfield 


Jordan 


557-2297 


Sanders 


Thompson Falls 


827-3581 


Glacier 


Cut Bank 


873-5534 


Sheridan 


Plentywood 


765-1370 


"NO MAIL" 


Browning 


338-5151 


Silver Bow 


Butte 


782-2351 


Golden Valley 


Ryegate 


568-2231 






782-0436 


Granite 


Philipsburg 


859-3671 






723-6002 


Hill 


Havre 


265-4348 






723-6054 


Jefferson 


Boulder 


225-3327 


Stillwater 


Columbus 


322-5331 


Judith Basin 


Stanford 


566-2461 


Sweet Grass 


Big Timber 


932-2566 


Lake 


Poison 


883-6211 


Teton 


Choteau 


466-5721 


Lewis & Clark 


Helena 


442-2020 


Toole 


Shelby 


434-2371 


Liberty 


Chester 


334-3841 


Trccisure 


Hysham 


342-5547 


Lincoln 


Libby 


293-7781 


VaUey 


Glasgow 


228-2489 




Eureka 


296-2722 






228-8281 


Madison 


Virginia City 


843-5361 


Wheatland 


Harlowton 


632-5611 


McCone 


Circle 


485-3425 


Wibaux 


Wibaux 


795-2403 








Yellowstone 


Billings 


248-1691 



AFTER THE VIOLENCE 

Immediately after the violent encounter with your husband or boyfriend, you will 
need to decide what course of action you want to take. Five options you may want to 
consider are: 

1 . Call the closest crisis line (see listings in front of booklet) 

2. Leave the house immediately 

3. Go to the hospital 

4. Call the pohce 

5. Seek professional counseling 

In deciding what is best for you to do, you should consider how seriously you have 
been injured, whether you are still in immediate danger of being attacked and whether 
your children's safety is being threatened. 

1 . Call The Local Crisis Line Or Women's Center (refer to list of hone numbers and 
crisis lines in front of booklet) if any such service is available in your area. You 
should contact them (it is possible that an answering service will receive and put 
you through immediately to the crisis worker) and tell the person who answers 
the phone exactly what has happened to you and where you are now. The center 
may be able to give you moral support, emergency housing, information about 
your legal rights and the names of other agencies which can be contacted for 
further assistance. Ask crisis line worker if pictures can be taken of your injuries. 

2. Leave the house immediately 

If possible, try to take any important documents and available cash with you. 

You should take your children unless it is impossible for you to do so. It is very 
important to get your children with you immediately. 

If you do not have transportation or any place to go and it is late at night, you 
may want to stay in the house until morning and then leave immediately after 
your husband goes out for the day. 

If you leave the house without taking any possessions or papers, you may ask 
the pohce to escort you to the house for the sole purpose of getting your personal 
belongings. 

If you know someone who is trustworthy and who will understand your situa- 
tion, you may want to call him/her and ask for temporary housing or money for 
a motel. 

If you go to a friend's house, tell him/her exactly what happened and ask 
them, if possible, to take pictures of your injuries. 

3. Go To The Hospital 

You might want to take a friend or a crisis line worker along for support when 
you go to the hospital. 

The hospital's emergency room is open all night and should not turn anyone 
away due to lack of money. Ask hospital personnel about the Hill-Burton Act 
which provides funds for people who cannot afford to pay. You might also 
consider billing your husband or boyfriend for medical costs. The 1979 legisla- 
ture passed a law giving a person the right to sue a spouse for medical damages. 



Tell the doctor exactly what happened to you. It i& in your be^i iiitwiwo,.o .v^ ^w 
conipieteiy lionest with the doctor concerning the source of your injuries. 

The hospital should make a record of your injuries which can be used later in 
court. Ask to have pictures taken of your injuries so you will have evidence if you 
later decide to go to court. 

4. CaUThePoUce 

If you are afraid of further attack or are restrained from leaving the house, call 
the poUce or sheriff's office and ask that they send an officer to assist you to leave 
and protect you. 

Do not expect the policeman/woman or sheriffs deputy to arbitrate argu- 
ments, admonish or threaten your spouse, or arrest your spouse and take him 
away on the spot. 

At this point your physical safety and that of your children is paramount. 

If you call the poUce, ask them to make a written report of the incident and be 
prepared to cooperate in the prosecution of your spouse. There are not enough 
pohce or sheriff's deputies, or time in the day, for them to aid in saving your 
marriage. Continued calls for assistance over long periods of time without any 
prosecution will eventually result in slow or no response and that will be the time 
when you need it. 

If the police or sheriff's deputies come to your house, ask them to stand by 
while you pack a few things. They will understand this, but please remember they 
will not settle disputes over ownership of property. 

The pohce or sheriff's deputies will assist you in finding a place of refuge. 

Within three (3) days of the incident, you should contact the police station or 
sheriff's office and indicate that you wish to have criminal charges filed. Depend- 
ing on the county and the particular department, you may be asked to make a 
written statement, sign a complaint, or be asked to see the city or county attor- 
ney. Please cooperate with the police or sheriff's office in this matter. You may 
feel that they are unsympathetic or that you are being given the runaround, but 
remember that many persons who wish to file complaints do not follow through 
with the prosecution of those complaints. 

If you are asked to see the county or city attorney, see that a copy of the police 
report has been referred to that office or obtain a copy of the report and bring it 
with you. 

After a complaint is filed, a warrant of arrest is issued for the apprehension of 
the person accused. The arrest may take some time — depending on the available 
personnel and the difficulty of locating the accused. If there are further threats or 
some particular reason for wishing an earUer arrest, please make the reasons 
known. 

5 . Professional Counseling 

Call the closest mental health center. See Ustings in front of this booklet, or ask 
your crisis Hne worker for the name of a local counselor sensitive to the problem 
of domestic violence. Remember — It is up to you to seek help and support. 



YOUR 
CHOICES: 



• Remain at home 

• Call the nearest crisis line (see front page) 

• File a report with the police -^don't prosecute 

prosecute ^ trial ^fine 

\ 

probation 

• Go to the hospital for medical treatment 

• Talk to and/or stay with friends or rela- 
tives 

• Consult your minister, priest, or rabbi 

divorce 

• See a lawyer ^ separation 

^ annulment 

• Call a helping agency (welfare, etc.) for 
emergency food, housing, etc. 

• Seek professional counseling 

• See the front section for names & phone 
numbers 

• Please consider this: calling the police 
may be the best way to get out of immedi- 
ate danger. 



PREPARING TO LEAVE 

Many women who are in a physically abusive relationship find it difficult to leave the 
home and end the relationship permanently. You may wish to seek advice and support 
from a crisis line or counselor. 

If you are mentally and emotionally unable to leave at this time, you can still protect 
your own interests by doing certain things which will make it easier to leave, if neces- 
sary, at a later time. Also remember that you may have to leave in order to get your 
spouse/mate to seek help with his problem. 

1 . Get originals or copies of important documents such as: 
Birth certificates for yourself and your children 

Prior divorce or custody papers 

Your marriage license 

The lease or deed to your house 

Tax returns 

Bank book(s) 

Rent receipts or loan papers on the house 

Telephone and utility bills 

Medical and dental bills 

Car registration 

Credit cards 

Insurance premiums 

Many of these documents will be necessary in order for you to obtain free or inexpen- 
sive legal services, housing, or public assistance from welfare. Written proof of your 
income and expenses is particuarly important for getting your court fees waived. This 
information may also be used by the court to compute your child support award, if one 
is granted. 

You should not feel guilty or uncomfortable about gathering family records. These 
documents are yours as much as your husband's and you have every right to have a copy 
of them. 

2. If you are unemployed and taking care of your children, you may want to begin 
thinking about your job skills and the possibility of day care for your children. 

Check with friends, local job service, the newspaper and local women's center 
(if any) about job possibilities. 

Check your local county welfare department for information re: food stamps, 
housing, day care, etc. (See directory in the front of this book.) 

Ask your friends, social services and local schools about day care facilities in 
the area. 

3. Try to keep track of your family's income and expenses so that you will know if 
your husband's paycheck, if any, is being used to pay for family needs and will 
have a realistic idea of what it costs to run your household. 



4. Try to get either a joint bank account or a bank account in your name. Once you 
leave, do not put or leave money in a joint account. Put all money in an account 
in your name only. 

5. If you are thinking seriously about a divorce, do not "negotiate with your husband 
regarding child support or property settlements before seeing an attorney. Nego- 
tiations of this nature are not in your best interest and may result in useless 
fighting between you and your husband. 

If you need legal advice, ask a divorced friend, legal services (see listing in 
front of this booklet), a local women's center, a local bar association or lawyer 
referral service to recommend an attorney. Do not use your husband's attorney 
or anyone recommended by your husband's attorney. 



YOU ARE NOT POWERLESS OR LOCKED IN A BATTERING RELA- 
TIONSHIP FOREVER BECAUSE YOU ARE PREPARING TO LEAVE AND 
WILL BE READY TO SET OUT ON YOUR OWN AT THE RIGHT TIME. 



YOUR CIVIL REMEDIES: 

Fees — If you are low income or unemployed, you may be able to seek assistance at 
Legal Services (see listings in front of booklet for phone numbers). If you don't qualify 
for Legal Services, and have to obtain a lawyer on your own, the court can order your 
husband to pay your court and legal fees if he is able to and you can't. An uncontested 
divorce usually costs from $3(X)-$500. A contested divorce can cost much more. 

Divorce — A divorce is now called a "dissolution of marriage" . It is a legal request to 
end a marriage. You may file for a divorce immediately upon making Montana your 
home. The divorce cannot be final until you have resided in Montana for 90 days. The 
only grounds for divorce is that the marriage is "irretrievably broken". The two basic 
guides to determining "irretrievable breakdown" are 1. that the parties have been 
separated for 180 days prior to beginning divorce proceedings or 2. there is "a serious 
marital discord adversely affecting the attitude of one or both of the parties towards 
marriage". 

Legal Separation — This is somewhat like a divorce, but there is no request to end the 
marriage. It may be for an indefinite period of time. If you get a separation and later 
want a divorce, you may need to pay separate legal fees. After a legal separation is 
granted, you cannot get a divorce for six months. Both parties may be liable for 
maintaining the household. 

Annulment — This is a court decree that you were never married because your 
marriage was invalid from the beginning. Some recognized grounds are that your 
husband was married to someone else when he married you, that you were forced into 
marriage against your will, or that you did not consent to the marriage because you 
were under the influence of drugs or alcohol, or that you were mentally incapable of 
consenting. In Montana, annulment is now called Declaration of Invalidity. 

9 



Formalities — You should have your husband's proper address and the length of time 
he has been in Montana if he is a resident. You should know the date and place of your 
marriage, the date when you and your husband separated, and the names, ages and 
addresses of any living children of the marriage. You should have some idea of what 
you want and what you need from your husband, for example, how much child support 
or what property. There is no residency requirement for filing for assault. Once again, 
you must live in Montana 90 days before the divorce is granted — not before filing such 
an action. 

Temporary Restraining Order (T.R.O.) — A temporary restraining order can be 
granted by the District Court if "not granting one would cause immediate, irreparable 
injury to the applicant". The TRO will set forth the reasons for it's issuance and be 
specific in describing the acts to be restrained. A TRO will not expire in 10 days as some 
people believe; however, there does need to be a hearing at some time to continue it. 
Such an order might deter your husband or boyfriend from molesting or disturbing you 
or destroying or taking any property. 

A TRO can order your husband or boyfriend out of your home, but probably not out 
of a house he co-owns or co-rents without a hearing. 

If your husband or boyfriend is the kind of person who respects a Court order, a 
TRO may offer you some protection. If he is not, commencement of a criminal action 
may be what you need to do. Once under arrest, the Court can release him upon the 
condition that he leave you and the children alone. If he fails to do so, he can be put in 
jail. 

If you need to keep your boyfriend away from your home, and you own or rent the 
house, and he does not stay away, you can simply give him notice that he is not to come 
to your house. If necessary, move his property out. Then call the police and tell them 
that he is trespassing if he does come onto your property. 

Commitment — You cannot commit a spouse to a mental hospital involuntarily. You 
must contact the County Attorney's office to proceed with involuntary commitment 
proceedings in District Court. It is the State of Montana which commits any person to 
the mental hospital — not you as an individual. It is a difficult process. 



CRIMINAL CHARGES: 

If you have been assaulted by your spouse or boyfriend or various other criminal acts 
have been committed, you should, as any other citizen, report this to the police or 
sheriff's office. In the case of crimes by one spouse against the other, reporting crimes 
and cooperating in their prosecution will help prevent the commission of further crimes 
by the spouse against you or against some other person. 

Reporting may also bring about forced rehabilitation, for example, the treatment of 
alcoholism, which the person will not do voluntarily. Though conviction of a crime can 
be punished by imprisionment or fine, most persons who are convicted are placed on 
probation, required to seek treatment or counseling, and imprisioned only if they 
continue to violate the laws. Sometimes the only way to bring a situation and its causes 
to a head is for charges to be filed, however difficult that may be. 

10 



If you do report a crime agaJn?t j'ou by your spouse^ remember that you have only 
reported a crime. The final decision whether or not criminal charges will be filed, what 
kind of charges will be filed, and how far the prosecution will go is up to the prosecutor 
hot to you. While the prosecuting attorney should, and will consider your wishes and 
interests in these matters, you are not responsible for the charges being made nor can 
you, of your own accord, have them dismissed. If pressure is brought upon you to 
dismiss the charges, tell the person pressuring you that it is the prosecutor who dismisses 
charges, not you, and inform the prosecutor of whom is pressuring you. 

Please be honest and candid with the law enforcement officials and the prosecutor, 
however embarrassing or intimate the matter may be. Do not omit matters to make 
yourself look better or someone else look worse. The police, deputy sheriffs, and 
prosecutors are not easily shocked and are quite familiar with people. They will be 
unhappy, to say the least, if they find you have Ued or left out significant facts. Remem- 
ber, you are not the first battered spouse they have seen, and you will, unfortunately, 
not be the last. 

Do not attempt to have charges filed so that your spouse will be arrested and spend 
the night in jail. Do not attempt to have charges filed so that your spouse will be 
arrested so that you may re-enter the house in his absence. Do not attempt to have 
charges filed in the belief that it will help you in a dissolution proceeding or child 
custody case. All of these have been attempted before; the prosecutors, police and 
deputy sheriffs are wise to it, and someday you may really need their assistance. Always 
remember the little bey who cried "WOLF" and the trouble that happened to him. 

Remember you are not alone. The pohce, deputy sheriffs, and prosecutors are famil- 
iar with various groups and agencies who can offer advice and counseling, and go with 
you to court. Do not be afraid to ask questions and ask for help if you do not under- 
stand or need assistance. Ask your local Women's Resource Center for support. They 
will be willing to accompany you to court. 

Below are some of the crimes committed by one spouse against another. They are 
taken from the Montana Code Annotated (MCA). Please note that Montana does not 
recognize spousal rape or spousal sexual assault unless the couple is separated: 

Assault. 

(1) A person commits the offense of assault if he: 

(a) purposely or knowingly causes bodily injury to another; 

(b) negligently causes bodily injury to another with a weapon; 

(c) purposely or knowingly makes physical contact of an insulting or provok- 
ing nature with any individual; or 

(d) purposely or knowingly causes reasonable apprehension of bodily injury 
in another. The purpose to cause reasonable apprehension of knowledge 
that reasonable apprehension would be caused shall be presumed in any 
case in which a person knowingly points a firearm at or in the direction of 
another, whether or not the offender beheves the firearm to be loaded. 



11 



Aggravated Assault. 

(1) A person commits the offense of aggravated assault if he purposely or know- 
ingly causes: 

(a) serious bodily injury to another; 

(b) bodily injury to another with a weapon; 

(c) reasonable apprehension of serious bodily injury in another by use of a 
weapon; or 

(d) bodily injury to a peace officer. 

Sexual intercourse without consent. 

(1) A person who knowingly has sexual intercourse without consent with a person 
of the opposite sex not his spouse commits the offense of sexual intercourse 
without consent. 

NOTE: If you live apart from your spouse under a decree of separation or otherwise, 
and he has sexual intercourse with you without your consent, he can be 
charged with crime of Sexual Intercourse without Consent. 

Sexual assault. 

(1) A person who knowingly subjects another not his spouse to any sexual contact 
without consent commits the offense of sexual assault. 

Intimidation. 

(1) A person commits the offense of intimidation when, with the purpose to cause 
another to perform or to omit the performance of any act, he communicates to 
another a threat to perform without lawful authority any of the following acts: 

(a) inflict physical harm on the person threatened or any other person or on 
property; 

(b) subject any person to physical confinement or restraint; 

(c) commit any criminal offense; 

(d) accuse any person of an offense; 

(e) expose any person to hatred, contempt, or ridicule; or 

(0 take action as a public official against anyone or anything, withhold offi- 
cial action, or cause such action or withholding. 

(2) A person commits the offense of intimidation if he knowingly communicates a 
threat or false report of a pending fire, explosion, or disaster which would 
endanger life or property. 

Criminal trespass to property. 

( 1 ) A person commits the offense of criminal trespass to property if he knowingly: 

(a) enters or remains unlawfully in an occupied structure; or 

(b) enters or remains unlawfully in or upon the premises of another. 

NOTE: A person enters or remains unlawfully in an occupied structure or premises 
of another when he is not licensed, invited, or otherwise privileged to do so. 
This would not apply if you are residing with your spouse, but it does apply 
if you are living apart. 

12 



Theft. 

(1) A person commits the offense of theft when he purposely or knowingly obtains 
or exerts unauthorized control over property of the owner and: 

(a) has the purpose of depriving the owner of the property; 

(b) purposely or knowingly uses, conceals, or abandons the property in such 
manner as to deprive the owner of the property; or 

(c) uses, conceals, or abandons the property knowing such use, concealment, 
or abandonment probably will deprive the owner of the property. 

(2) A person commits the offense of theft when he purposely or knowingly obtains 
by threat or deception control over property of the owner and: 

(a) has the purpose of depriving the owner of the property; 

(b) purposely or knowingly uses, conceals, or abandons the property in such 
manner as to deprive the owner of the property; or 

(c) uses, conceals, or abandons the property knowing such use, concealment, 
or abandoimient probably will deprive the owner of the property. 

(3) A person commits the offense of theft when he purposely or knowingly obtains 
control over stolen property knowing the property to have been stolen by 
another and: 

(a) has the purpose of depriving the owner of the property; 

(b) purposely or knowingly uses, conceals, or abandons the property in such 
manner as to deprive the owner of the property; or 

(c) uses, conceals, or abandons the property knowing such use, concealment, 
or abandonment robably will deprive the owner of the property. 

NOTE: Your spouse cannot take or dispose of property which is in your name 
without your consent. However, he or she can take and dispose of household 
and personal effects while you are living together. If you have ceased living 
together, taking, and disposing of household and personal effects normally 
accessible to both of you is theft. 

Violation of Privacy in Communications. 

(1) A person commits the offense of violating privacy in communications if he 
knowingly or purposely: 

(a) with the purpose to terrify, intimidate, threaten, harass, annoy, or offend, 
communicates with any person by telephone and uses any obscene, lewd, 
or profane language, suggests any lewd or lascivious act, or threatens to 
inflict injury or physical harm to the person or property of any person (the 
use of obscene, lewd, or profane language or the making of a threat or 
lewd or lascivious suggestions in prima facie evidence of an intent to 
terrify, intimidate, threaten, harass, aimoy, or offend). 



13 



YOUR CHILDREN: 

Endangering the welfare of children. 

(1) A parent, guardian, or other person supervising the welfare of a child less than 
16 years old commits the offense of endangering the welfare of children if he 
knowingly endangers the child's welfare by violating a duty of care, protection, 
or support. 

(2) A parent or guardian or any person who is 18 years of age or older, whether or 
not he is supervising the welfare of the child, commits the offense of endanger- 
ing the welfare of children if he knowingly contributes to the delinquency of a 
child less than 16 years old by: 

(a) supplying or encouraging the use of intoxicating substances by the child; 
or 

(b) assisting, promoting, or encouraging the child to: 

(i) abandon his place of residence without the consent of his parents or 

guardian; 
(ii) enter a place of prostiution; or 
(iii) engage in sexual conduct. 

(4) On the issue of whether there has been a violation of the duty of care, protec- 
tion, and support, the following, in addition to all other admissible evidence, is 
admissible: cruel treatment; abuse; infliction of unnecessary and cruel aban- 
donment; neglect, lack of proper medical care, clothing, shelter, and food; and 
evidence of past bodily injury. 

(5) The Court may order, in its discretion, any fine levied or any bond forfeited 
upon a charge of endangering the welfare of children paid to or for the benefit 
of the person or persons whose welfare the defendant has endangered. 

NOTE: If your husband has ever been charged with endangering the welfare of 
children be sure to tell the police. 

Custodial interference. 

(1) A person commits the offense of custodial interference if, knowing that he has 
no legal right to do so, he takes, entices, or withholds from lawful custody any 
child, incompetent person, or other person entrusted by authority of law to the 
custody of another person or institution. 

(2) A person convicted of the offense of custodial interference shall be imprisoned 
in the state prison for any term not to exceed 10 years. 

(3) A person who has not left the state does not commit an offense under this 
section if he voluntarily returns such person to lawful custody prior to arraign- 
ment. A person who has left the state does not commit an offense under this 
section if he voluntarily returns such person to lawful custody prior to arrest. 

NOTE: Montana, along with 49 other states, have adopted the Uniform Child Cus- 
tody Jurisdiction Act. The purpose of the Act is to set standards for deter- 
mining which state has jurisdiction, (the legal authority), to determine who 
gets custody of the children. Under the Act, if your state has been your 
child's home state within the six months before you began custody proceed- 
ings your state has jurisdiction to decide who gets custody, even if their 
father has taken them to another state. 

14 



LEGAL DEFINITIONS 

1. Preliminary Hearing: A hearing held before a justice of the peace to determine if 
there is probable cause to beheve a felony has been committed and the person 
accused has committed it. If this is found, information is filed in the district court. 

2. Arraignment: A court proceedings at which the defendant is formally charged and 
he/she enters a plea of guilty or not guilty. No evidence is presented at this time. 
The victim may be present. 

3. Plea Bargaining: A process whereby the defendant agrees to plead guilty and the 
prosecutor agrees (1) to reduce the charge to another carrying a lesser penalty; (2) 
to dismiss some of the charges; or (3) to recommend a particular sentence to the 
judge. A prosecutor should consult with the victim concerning any plea arrange- 
ment. 

4. Arrest Warrant: After a complaint or information has been filed, the judge or 
justice of the peace issues an order for the police or sheriff's deputies to find, 
detain and bring the person accused to answer the charges. Within 24 hours after 
arrest, the accused person is brought before the court for an initial appearance 
where the accused is advised of the charge, advised of his rights, bail is set, and an 
attorney is appointed if necessary. An arraignment is set at this time. 

5 . Continuance: This simply means a postponement to a later date or time or a court 
action. Continuance may be granted for any of several reasons, for example, an 
overcrowded court calendar, an attorney who has not had time to prepare, an 
essential witness who cannot be in Court at the scheduled time for a valid reason, 
and so forth. 

6. Deferred Prosecution: After an arrest and even after a charge has been filed, the 
prosecutor may agree to defer prosecuting the charge futher upon the defendant 
agreeing to obey certain conditions. If the defendant obeys the conditions, the 
charge is dismissed, but if not, he is tried. 

7. Sentence: After a person has been convicted by a jury or pleaded guilty, the judge 
or justice of the peace imposes a sentence. The court has several options. The judge 
or justice of the peace may require imprisonment up to the legal maximum and/or 
execution of the sentence, in whole or in part, for a period of time upon the 
performance by the defendant of certain conditions. If the defendant does not 
obey the conditions, he is arrested and the sentence is executed. 

Finally, the judge or justice of the peace may choose to defer or put off imposing 
a sentence for a period of time during which the defendant must obey certain 
conditions. If the defendant performs the conditions, he can appear at the end of 
the deferment and ask that the charges against him be dismissed which is done. If 
he violates the conditions, he is arrested and a sentence is pronounced. Generally, 
persons who have not violated the law before have deferred impositions of sen- 
tence. 



15 



CASE STUDY 

Mrs. R., 31 years old, is four months pregnant. She has spent the evening with her 
two small children worrying about her husband who hasn't come home. It's 10:00 on a 
Friday night, March 19. 

She turns off the news, hears a knock, opens the door and sees her husband. Before 
she can get to the back door he is coming at her, drunk and angry, accusing her of being 
with another man. He searches the house waking the children. The two little boys 
scream as they see their father kick Mrs. R. in the stomach and hold a butcher knife at 
her throat. He then stabs a chair several times, threatening suicide. Finally he pushes 
Mrs. R. against the refrigerator, bumps her head against it several times. She passes out 
on the floor while he chokes her. 

She calls the crisis line and the police and eleven minutes later the police arrive and 
send her to the hospital in an ambulance. Mr. R. is taken to jail and charged with the 
misdemeanor of simple assault. 

He is out of jail the next day. Later Mrs. R. hears he is threatening to kill her. She 
obtains a Temporary Restraining Order (TRO) and decides to get a divorce. After some 
financial difficulties she gets a lawyer on April 13, 1977 and on April 15 files a criminal 
complaint of assault and destruction of private property against her husband for the 
March 19 incident. 

She alternately wants her husband back and hates him. He contributes nothing in 
terms of support — she leaves a good paying job — and goes on welfare — 8 months 
pregnant. He demands to see the children, finally kidnapping the oldest. The child is 
later rescued from a bar where his father had taken him. 

One and a half years later the divorce is final. She has custody of her children and 
child support payment. She has been to court five times accompanied by crisis line 
advocates from the local woman's center. 

Mrs. R. was in supportive counseling. Counseling was also available for her hus- 
band, though he did not utilize it. She received the advocacy and help she needed to 
pursue court process, and create a safer life for herself and her children. She states she 
could not have done this without outside assistance. 

BUT SHE IS HAPPY, INDEPENDENT AND SAFE — HER 
STRUGGLE IS PRINTED HERE BECAUSE PERHAPS SHE IS 
NOT UNLIKE YOU — YOU MAY HAVE TO LEAVE SEVERAL 
TIMES BEFORE YOU CAN "MAKE IT", YOU MAY HAVE TO 
GO INTO COUNSELING WITH OR WITHOUT YOUR MATE 
TO LEARN TO LIVE A NEW LIFE. DOMESTIC VIOLENCE IS 
THE FASTEST GROWING CRIME IN THE COUNTRY — YOU 
ARE ONE OF THOUSANDS. BE STRONG — OPTIONS AND 
RIGHTS ARE YOURS TO EXPLORE AND USE. 

This handbook was edited by staff from Community Services Division, SRS. Special 
thanks to attorneys Carol Mitchell, Randi Hood, Leslie Taylor and Carroll Blend for 
their valuable legal consultation. 



16 



NOTES 



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